The Top 10 Reasons to Enroll in a Technical School
Many people fresh out of high school – or adults looking to further their career – will need to decide if they want to go to a technical school or a traditional college.
While many opt for a traditional college experience, there are numerous benefits to enrolling in a vocational or technical school (particularly in the fields of allied healthcare, robotics, and automotive repair).
We’ve compiled a list of the top 12 reasons why you should consider enrolling in a technical school today.
1. Cost Effectiveness of Tech Schools
Gaining an education from a technical trade school often costs a fraction of the cost of a bachelor’s degree (which can range from $67,000 to $172,000). With such a high price tag, university students typically take out much more in student loans than technical school graduates.
Technical and vocational schools (particularly robotics training and allied healthcare programs) offer a variety of programs with different lengths, which translates into saving big on tuition and supplies (such as textbooks). Many technical schools even include the cost of textbooks into their tuition rates, allowing students to calculate their education expenses more accurately.
Students who attend a local technical school and live at home also save significantly on living and accommodation expenses.
2. Learning by Practice
Technical and vocational colleges place an emphasis on career-focused, hands-on training in a certain trade or technical skill. The focal point of four-year colleges, however, tends to be more theoretical than practical. Four-year program graduates are typically less prepared to enter the workforce than students who received highly-specialized training at technical colleges.
One of the biggest benefits of attending a technical school is taking advantage of technology in the classroom, which often closely resembles what a student will encounter in their future workplace. For instance, technical school students studying to be an HVAC/R technician often have internships, allowing them to gain hands-on experience using these specialized systems.
3. Easier Admission Requirements
Getting into traditional colleges can be difficult for poor test takers or adults who have been out of school for several years. Admissions officers at universities also tend to choose incoming students through GPAs and other extracurricular activities.
Admission requirements at many technical schools (such as carpentry and automotive programs) are more relaxed. That said, admission for some programs – such as cardiovascular technology – is more selective and may have stricter requirements.
4. Flexibility and Convenience
While the majority of programs at technical schools require students to take daytime courses, many offer night and weekend classes, too. This might provide a better schedule for working adults who want to upgrade their skill sets – or transition to an entirely new field.
The time it takes to finish a program varies, and also depends on a student’s availability. For example, someone studying to become a cardiographic technician can complete their training in three months if they attend regular weekday classes, or six months when attending a weekend program.
5. A Good Investment in Your Future
With student debt at record levels, many people are opting to work in specific trades without a degree. This is often the most affordable option, which may turn out to be a great investment down the line.
Without racking up hundreds of thousands of dollars to train to become a medical doctor, students can work towards becoming a cardiovascular technologist and command an average salary of $55,000 after receiving their certification.
Another lucrative healthcare career is a diagnostic medical sonographer, which typically requires a 2-3 year program. The average national salary of just under $70,000 – one of the highest in the allied healthcare sector – means that entry-level sonographers stand to earn big.
6. Possible Job Placement Before Graduation
Tech schools place greater emphasis on career development seminars, as do staff who provide expert advice on relevant workforce skills. Some of these skills include how to find and obtain employment, creating a resume, job hunting techniques, and the best ways to communicate with a potential employer.
Through internships and job fairs, students are often put in direct contact with potential employers. This allows students to connect with a specific business or hiring manager – even before their graduation date.
7. Higher Rates of Employment
The courses offered at trade and vocational schools revolve around economic sectors that are expected to be in high demand after they graduate. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that the healthcare field will expand by 18% between 2016 and 2026 (Examples of allied healthcare careers include MRI technologists, cardiovascular technologies, and diagnostic medical sonographers.).
Students at vocational schools are trained for jobs that require employees to be physically present, meaning that it’s far more difficult to outsource or automate their positions. In other words, graduates in fields such as automotive repair, trucking, and carpentry have far greater job security.
8. No Unnecessary Extra Classes
Four-year universities require their students to take general education courses outside of their primary field of studies, such as foreign languages, English literature, history, and statistics.
While these classes might be required to meet graduation requirements, HVAC/R and automotive programs only offer specialized courses that are relevant to their field. Avoiding unnecessary classes can save students time and money.
Technical schools offer the same core programs throughout the academic year, so students don’t need to wait to tackle the courses they need. Four-year college students may need to wait a semester (or longer) just to take the classes to fulfill graduation requirements.
9. Class Sizes
Students at technical schools tend to receive more attention in their training. Instead of going to lectures with hundreds of students and one professor at a four-year college, students at technical schools can take advantage of a more hands-on education from qualified instructors. This is particularly true for students in electrician or electrical technician programs who must learn how to handle technology safely and efficiently.
More one-on-one attention from teachers, group study sessions, and project work means that you’ll be extremely skilled upon completing your course.
10. Finding a Career in Lucrative Fields
When it comes to higher education, an increasing number of students and working adults are electing to enroll in vocational or trade schools. These cheaper educational alternatives allow students to receive a solid education quickly while also preparing them for employment immediately after graduation.
This is particularly true for jobs in the allied healthcare services, which is projected to be one of the fastest growing sectors in the economy. Students who are interested in starting a career in allied healthcare have several choices in jobs that are in high demand, including medical billing and coding, neurodiagnostic technology, pharmacy technician, and many others.
Start Your New Career Path Today
If an allied healthcare career path sounds like something you’re interested in, contact an AIMS Education representative today!